U.S. backs Guyana amid Venezuela’s threat of invasion
12/13/2023 // Richard Brown // Views

The U.S. has pledged unwavering support for Guyana amid concerns over Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's threat to annex more than half of the country and exploit its oil resources.

Tensions have escalated, leading Georgetown to place its small army on high alert for a possible invasion by Caracas. Brazil is deploying additional troops and armored vehicles to its border with Venezuela and Guyana to prevent the conflict from spreading.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken reassured Guyanese President Irfaan Ali of America's support for Guyana's sovereignty during talks between the two. The U.S. Department of State, which Blinken heads, is mulling the return of sanctions on Venezuela. Moreover, there are reports that the Guyanese military has contacted its American counterpart for potential support.

The dispute revolves around the oil-rich Essequibo region, which constitutes over two-thirds of Guyana's land mass and has become a focal point of contention. Maduro, who took over when his predecessor Hugo Chavez died in 2013, aims to claim the oil supplies in Essequibo. A recent referendum in Venezuela saw over 95 percent of voters supporting the government's assertion of ownership over the region. (Related: Post-socialist revolution Venezuela weaponizing HUNGER to control starving population.)

However, analysts and sources in Caracas have said the referendum was an effort by Maduro to show strength and gauge his government's support ahead of the South American nation's 2024 election, rather than representing a real likelihood of military action. The situation has nevertheless raised concerns in the region, with the potential for the U.S. to become involved.

Michael Rubin, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, has urged U.S. President Joe Biden to deploy American troops to Guyana as a deterrent. The possibility of the U.K. intervening is uncertain, as the Commonwealth of Nations – which Georgetown is a member of – lacks a military component. Guyana was under the Union Jack from 1796 until 1966.

A new conflict brewing in South America?

Maduro's actions, including mobilizing the military and ordering oil exploration in the disputed region, are viewed as provocative – prompting Guyana to seek international intervention. Ali has denounced the moves as a direct threat, expressing plans to escalate the matter to the International Court of Justice and the United Nations Security Council.

Meanwhile, Washington announced air exercises with Georgetown and Brasilia mobilized troops near its border with both countries. The U.S. Embassy in Georgetown confirmed that the U.S. Southern Command, which provides security cooperation in Latin America, was scheduled to conduct flight operations with the Guyanese military within the country's airspace.

While experts view Maduro's threats as more rhetoric than imminent action, the specter of invasion unsettles the global community.

Caracas has placed indigenous communities at the forefront of the Essequibo debate, sharing videos allegedly depicting indigenous people supporting the army's cause. However, critics, like Venezuelan local Domingo Fernández, deem this move "irresponsible." He accused Maduro's regime of exploiting communities and displacing them for controversial mining operations in the Amazon forest.

Amidst the geopolitical tensions, ExxonMobil – which has heavily invested in Guyana –  seeks to reassure investors. CEO Darren Woods expressed hope for a respectful arbitration process between the nations, but acknowledged a likely lengthy resolution.

The entwined interests of ExxonMobil and the Guyanese government, constituting 10 percent of Exxon's daily oil production, blur the lines between the oil company and the government. Venezuela frames this relationship as a key reason for annexation, aiming to diminish U.S. influence in the region.

Internal divisions exacerbate Guyana's predicament, with political factions clashing over the perceived "existential threat" from Venezuela.

Despite initial unity after the referendum, politicians and supporters now engage in infighting over resolving the conflict. Bipartisanship is urged to navigate the complex situation and address concerns about ExxonMobil's influence within the government.

Visit NationalSecurity.news for more stories like this.

Watch this video about Venezuela threatening Guyana with an invasion.

This video is from the High Hopes channel on Brighteon.com.

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